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Anxiety + depression for fitness to practise Watch

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    I study pharmacy and I've recently been having very traumatic experiences due to family problems at home, it has affected me to a point where my exams have suffered because of it, I have been advised to fill in an extenuating circumstances form but in order to do that I need to see a doctor which means me having to disclose me being depressed and anxious, would this affect my career in any way? would it fall under fitness to practise? It's not a long term illness it's all very acute and sudden.

    I'm really worried and I'm unsure about what I should do

    Any help is appreciated.
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    Have you discussed this with your tutor?

    You have to remember that just having anxiety and depression won't stop you from practising. It's how the conditions affect your ability to practise.
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    (Original post by Tiger Rag)
    Have you discussed this with your tutor?

    You have to remember that just having anxiety and depression won't stop you from practising. It's how the conditions affect your ability to practise.
    I'm going to speak with my tutor tomorrow, thing is I don't actually believe a doctor can help me with my situation, my biggest concerns are how my exams have been affected by my situation, but when it comes to my circumstance, it's not really documented, so I don't know how I should go about it, because the last thing I want now is my degree suffering.

    I just don't know if me telling my doctor would mean me having to disclose anything in the future, I don't feel like my long term ability would be affected at all, but I don't want a mental health problem record following me the rest of my life

    I'm not really sure how strict unis are with their policies regarding such matters
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    I doubt it would have major implications on your career. If you're concerned, Google the GMCs fitness to practice documents. I looked at them when I was looking at clinical psychology.

    If I can do that role with diagnosis of PTSD and dissociative disorder with anxiety and depression (and trauma specific schizo-something episodes) then pretty sure you'll be able to do your job.

    Many things are taken into account; including history of the illness and then your self awareness to know when you're not fit to practice.
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    Pharmacy student and I've declared anxiety on my fitness to practise form (we had to do it before starting the course) and general health form and they haven't said anything about it asides from support from the uni itself (nothing to do with pharmacy). I'd say it helps to make the course aware as they're better prepared to help you if need be.
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    Nursing student with schizophrenia here, hasn't affected anything for me. I would really advise talking to your doc, he might be able to recommend something to help the episode pass faster. Have you considered talking to your university's counseling service?
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    (Original post by ~Tara~)
    I doubt it would have major implications on your career. If you're concerned, Google the GMCs fitness to practice documents. I looked at them when I was looking at clinical psychology.

    If I can do that role with diagnosis of PTSD and dissociative disorder with anxiety and depression (and trauma specific schizo-something episodes) then pretty sure you'll be able to do your job.

    Many things are taken into account; including history of the illness and then your self awareness to know when you're not fit to practice.
    I will definitely give it a search, thank you!

    (Original post by ThePhoenixLament)
    Pharmacy student and I've declared anxiety on my fitness to practise form (we had to do it before starting the course) and general health form and they haven't said anything about it asides from support from the uni itself (nothing to do with pharmacy). I'd say it helps to make the course aware as they're better prepared to help you if need be.
    Is this information only available to the general pharmaceutical council? will any future employers have access to it?

    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Nursing student with schizophrenia here, hasn't affected anything for me. I would really advise talking to your doc, he might be able to recommend something to help the episode pass faster. Have you considered talking to your university's counseling service?
    Does this have any affect on employment? I don't mind disclosing it to a committee assuming I can still practise pharmacy but I would hate if any future employers discriminate against me because of it :/
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    I will definitely give it a search, thank you!



    Is this information only available to the general pharmaceutical council? will any future employers have access to it?



    Does this have any affect on employment? I don't mind disclosing it to a committee assuming I can still practise pharmacy but I would hate if any future employers discriminate against me because of it :/
    It is illegal for any future employers to discriminate against you for having a diagnosis of anxiety and depression in the past (or currently even). Not only that, but the only way they can know is if you disclose it yourself. It's not like you put it on your CV - medical records are confidential unless you give permission for your doctor to tell them.

    I don't know how in depth pharmacy fitness to practice rules are, though I would think that they would be less strict than for example doctors or nurses because you're dispensing drugs not making life and death decisions.

    Tbh, if this is affecting your studying ability you may do poorly in your exams and hence get a lower grade - this would affect your ability to get a job as a pharmacist a lot more. A big problem with depression is that it can get worse so getting help now is probably the best idea, I know you said you think it's going to be shortlived but it could get worse and that will, again, impact your ability to do well.
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    It is illegal for any future employers to discriminate against you for having a diagnosis of anxiety and depression in the past (or currently even). Not only that, but the only way they can know is if you disclose it yourself. It's not like you put it on your CV - medical records are confidential unless you give permission for your doctor to tell them.

    I don't know how in depth pharmacy fitness to practice rules are, though I would think that they would be less strict than for example doctors or nurses because you're dispensing drugs not making life and death decisions.

    Tbh, if this is affecting your studying ability you may do poorly in your exams and hence get a lower grade - this would affect your ability to get a job as a pharmacist a lot more. A big problem with depression is that it can get worse so getting help now is probably the best idea, I know you said you think it's going to be shortlived but it could get worse and that will, again, impact your ability to do well.
    Just to add: definitely talk to your personal tutor about this, they will know much better than anyone here if it will hurt your future career.


    I hope you feel better soon.
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    Also (sorry!) I didn't mean to seem like I was saying that pharmacists are less vital than doctors - I had a pharmacist pick up on a drug interaction that doctors hadn't noticed twice now so I know they do an important job.
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    You don't have to declare mental health difficulties but if you fall under the criteria of disabled by mental illness (including long term depression) and you don't declare it, you won't be covered by any legislation designed to protect you from unfair dismissal or poor treatment.
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    For future careers, anxiety/depression won't affect your ability to get employed. Having a diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder, Schizophrenia etc can affect career choices (some careers will not hire you and it's not illegal for them to 'discriminate' against you in these cases -- e.g. Army, Government jobs, I assume something like surgeon careers would be affected). But just anxiety/depression won't affect you.

    You can chose to declare it or not, but like what ~Tara~ said, not disclosing it leaves you unable to be protected. If you do disclose it, be prepared for future employers to ask you about it. If your mental health prevents you from doing the job correctly, they won't employ you. So you will need to prove things like anxiety/depression are under control (in treatment or being managed). I am not sure what the job of a pharmacist is (not sure what the job involves) so I can't give you more in-depth advice on what anxiety/depression may have an affect on within the job (anxiety can affect a persons ability to interact with customers for example).
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    I'm going to speak with my tutor tomorrow, thing is I don't actually believe a doctor can help me with my situation, my biggest concerns are how my exams have been affected by my situation, but when it comes to my circumstance, it's not really documented, so I don't know how I should go about it, because the last thing I want now is my degree suffering.

    I just don't know if me telling my doctor would mean me having to disclose anything in the future, I don't feel like my long term ability would be affected at all, but I don't want a mental health problem record following me the rest of my life

    I'm not really sure how strict unis are with their policies regarding such matters
    Have you considered approaching your student disability services directly? They almost certainly offer counselling and you can probably self refer - if you can't they will tell you. And I have to say that having some real, tangible, traumatic circumstances that make life difficult for a while does not mean you will be labelled for life. Best scenario - things change, you get some counsellign to help you cope, you improve, you move on. If you do have to disclose, they ask you about it, you tell them that some traumatic stuff happened, but you've dealt with it, and had no problems since then. ? Don't let it stop you getting help.
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    I am happy to hear that universities seem to have more options to deal with problems of this kind than they had when I was having similiar difficulites approx. 15 years ago. You are not alone. All the best!
    • #3
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    I study pharmacy and I've recently been having very traumatic experiences due to family problems at home, it has affected me to a point where my exams have suffered because of it, I have been advised to fill in an extenuating circumstances form but in order to do that I need to see a doctor which means me having to disclose me being depressed and anxious, would this affect my career in any way? would it fall under fitness to practise? It's not a long term illness it's all very acute and sudden.

    I'm really worried and I'm unsure about what I should do

    Any help is appreciated.
    Having depression or anxiety is not a fitness to practice issue and should not affect your career. When you apply for a job, you may have to disclose it on the occupational health questionnaire, and the occupational team may want to do an assessment, however you medical history would not be available to your employer directly. If occupational health feel that you need certain adjustments in the workplace, they will advise your employer of these, but not of your actual medical problem.

    (Just to point out, I am a medic rather than a pharmacist, and have not had to disclose a mental health condition to occupational health. However, this is my understanding of the process, and I do know several doctors with mental health conditions whose problems have not stopped them from working).
 
 
 
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